Mark Sisson – The Primal Blueprint – Mark’s Daily Apple
I’ve gone Primal and am loving it! But now you’ve got me questioning everything – even my beloved gum. I’m an avid chewer of the stuff and had never thought twice about. I took a closer look recently and saw all kinds of things I didn’t recognize including a warning about phenylketonurics. What are they and what about all the artificial sweeteners? Would Grok chew gum? If so, what are the healthiest options?
“Traditional sugared gum? You’re giving yourself a regular serving of sugar and the subsequent (albeit small) insulin spike every time you pop a stick. Artificially sweetened varieties? Even if you don’t have PKU, there’s some concern about aspartame as an excitotoxin that may overstimulate the brain’s nerve cells. (Some people report experiencing migraines in response to the sweetener.) And women who are pregnant are advised against using aspartame altogether. As we’ve mentioned before, it’s wise to ask yourself whether the artificially sweetened product (in this case, gum) offers benefits you couldn’t easily get from an unsweetened alternative, particularly if it’s something you will use on a regular basis. A single stick with 6-8 mg. of aspartame now and then might not have any real impact on you, but a pack a day habit of artificially sweetened gum can add up.”
“If simple breath freshening is what you’re up for, I’d suggest stashing an extra toothbrush and toothpaste in your bag or an herb-based mouth wash/spray. (Miessence has some good ones that the Environmental Working Group rates well.) Drinking plain water can help rinse away acids and avoid the dry mouth that exacerbates breath issues. Finally, go Grok style and chew on some natural herbs like parsley, rosemary or cardamom, or brew up some mint or anise tea instead of reaching for the gum pack.”